Job Satisfaction - 17 February 2009
There’s no denying that mainstream religion is in a serious decline. In the most recent Census, 19 percent of Australians identified themselves as having “no religion” – as opposed to only 6.7 percent in 1971. As someone who continues to confusingly swing back and forth between the spectrum of devoted Christian and adamant atheist, I’m going to take a guess as to why this trend is occurring.
People don’t feel like participating – let alone committing – to a religion that has either an inward or an outward focus. But people flock towards institutions which practice the art of connection.
Inward: This is when religions act to preserve their own interests. For example, despite society progressively becoming more accepting, religions continue to pursue intolerance.
Outward: Even though demographics are changing (think Gen Y), religions are preaching in the way they always have, neglecting to adapt their message or communication style.
Connection: Non-denominational churches are flourishing because they excel at this. By avoiding authoritative command structures, they become more flexible and relevant to many.
A similar thing happens at work when it comes to getting employees to be committed followers of the work they do. If the work you’re offering is focused either inward or outward rather than on connection, your employees won't have high rates of job satisfaction.
Inward: This is when you’re offering a job. The focus is on the organisation. Employees do their work just for the money. They have low levels of engagement and loyalty.
Outward: This is when you’re offering a career. The emphasis is on the employee, and in particular, his or her advancement. Job satisfaction is higher, but still limited.
Connection: This is when you’re offering a calling. The ultimate in job satisfaction, this is all about incorporating your employees’ passions, strongest skills, and talents in their work.
You don’t necessarily have to find jobs for your employees that fit their passions, strengths, and talents. However, I do suggest you discover what these unique traits are within each employee and then see how their jobs can be re-crafted so that their use is maximised. Only by leading them into temptation will your employees deliver you from evil.
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